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March 2007
Vol. 8, no. 3

Perspectives on Labour and Income

Literacy and employability
Ross Finnie and Ronald Meng

The effects of literacy and numeracy skills on the employability and incomes of high school dropouts are compared with those of graduates. Regression analysis based on the demographic characteristics and family backgrounds of early school leavers indicates that increasing proficiency in literacy and numeracy significantly improves the probability of being employed, the number of hours worked, and income.

GDP and employment growth
Philip Cross

A variety of factors contributed to the slowdown of output growth relative to employment growth during 2006. However, 2006 was not uniqueGDP and job growth rates have converged frequently in recent years, including most of 2002 and 2003. After reviewing the sources of last years productivity slowdown by industry, the negative impact of labour shortages on the quality of labour, especially in western Canada, is examined.

Work Absence Rates

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